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Full text of "History And Human Relation"

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and recesses within them—and not talk history in a
bloodless land of sociologist's jargon as though men
were machines, or as though we who know so little
about the insides of one another can box Martin Luther
and Napoleon into a few simple formulas. One of the
surprising things in present-day historical discussion is
the thinness and crudeness of some people's ideas about
human motive, and the shallow academic character of
their views on personality. Marxism and its satellite
systems, which have done so much in one way for
historical study, are doing colossal harm to young and
empty minds sometimes, by short-circuiting therreal
study of history and taking attention away from human
beings; and it is useless to pretend to know even how
historical forces operate if one does not know the human
minds and material upon which they are presumed to
be acting.

Further than this, if we give an historical explanation
of Charles I it is important to remember that this is not a
total explanation—the world up to the -present moment
has not found a total explanation of anything in the
universe. The historical explanation of Charles I is
the explanation of just so much of him as can be accounted
for by studying his environment and'antecedents, and it •
is compounded of only those ingredients which the
concrete evidence (eked out by the efforts of imaginative
sympathy) can supply. In a sense, it is only the
explanation of the outer man, for the historian knows
that he never quite reaches the innermost recesses of the
personality. Because of this, all historical explanation
is a fabric which has innumerable holes in it—or rather